In the UK, September is a sleepy month full of late nights, deadlines and freshers flu. We wave goodbye summer and hello to about 8 months of winter. In Australia, it’s quite the opposite and September would prove to be my busiest month… maybe ever.
To kick the month off, I went on a wine tour in Barossa Valley; visiting three vineyards with a pit stop at the ‘Worlds biggest rocking horse’?? (I don’t know either). Of course, a tour in Barossa is a must in the wine capital of Australia and I could take comfort in drinking in the morning knowing it’s night-time back at home.
Next I went to Melbourne for a long weekend which was wonderful and unlike any city I’ve been to before. The usually dark and eerie alleyways are actually where it’s all at in Melbourne and you’ll find some great food in a warm relaxed atmosphere. You could get lost in the shopping centres and it wouldn’t be a bad thing (except for your bank balance perhaps); but if you do make your way out, head to Queen Victoria Market on a Sunday morning and for some great finds and cafes set at a different pace to the city. Brighton Beach is another must, but the colourful bath houses adorning the strip of sand is also a tourist honey-pot so it can get quite cluttered.
The middle of September was spring break. Wasting no time here, I travelled to Kuala Lumpur for a few days, then onto Bali for 10 days. This was an amazing trip packed with quad bike rides through the jungle, white water rafting, baby turtles and mischievous monkeys. Spring break zapped me of all my money but I would do it again in a heart-beat.
Arriving back and adjusting to my old routine again was hard, especially with the ever-impending deadlines. But I am enjoying the work. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel now, and it shines over a white beach, palm trees, and peach daiquiris. East Coast here I come.
Yasmin Ballingall on semester exchange at Flinders University from Manchester Metropolitan University, UK during Semester 2, 2018
- Read Yasmin’s 1st blog post here